For Roasters & Retailers

‘It’s So Great To Be Needed:’ Greensboro Cafe, Coffee Shop Employ People With Disabilities


Soon after the opening of Chez Genese, owner Kathryn Hubert was reminded why she opened the cafe.

One of the cafe’s dishwashers was so excited to get her first paycheck she practically threw herself into Hubert’s arms.

Hubert said the joy comes from meeting a personal goal that at one time seemed impossible. About half of the cafe’s employees, including the dishwasher, have a disability.

“The growth that they have gone through in the last couple of months has been huge,” said Hubert, who opened the French-inspired restaurant at 616 S. Elm St. in Greensboro in October.

Providing a place for adults with disabilities to thrive is also the mission of A Special Blend, a coffee shop that opened about the same time at 3900 W. Market St.

The two eateries are not affiliated, but both have the same goal.

“Just like you and I have jobs, they want to feel significant and a have sense of

accomplishment and to make a contribution to society,” Dennis Murphy said of people with special needs.

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